Monday, September 03, 2007

KL trip

Two weeks ago today, I just visited my soon-to-be university, and was holidaying with my family at KL. Okay.. let’s start from the beginning, on 19th August, a Sunday. Flight was on schedule, the holiday seemed to be getting off on a good start. One of the things I noticed was that now Air Asia sells Digi starter packs and RM30 reload cards during the flight, now if only one day they can find out how to let us safely use handphones on flight.

Truth to be told, this whole trip was a last minute thing, accommodation wasn’t even booked till a few days before we left. Thus, we were lucky to find a room. We stayed at The Royale Bintang Damansara, a Family Suite worked out to be the best option, being cheaper than having two rooms. The locality of the hotel was great, right behind the hotel was The Curve, opposite the road was Ikea and Ikano Power Centre. One Utama was just a short drive away. Splendid. How could I not know this place existed until now? The room was spacious enough, the bathroom however was huge. Even bigger than the master bedroom.

Here’s the living room area. I didn't know there would be a DVD player

And behind the couch are two blissfully comfortable single beds.

The master bedroom is separated from the common area by a sliding door. Hmm.. wonder what’s my brother looking for. Perhaps this?

The name’s Blund. Jamie Blund. Well, this cutie from Ikea had a tag on it saying it’s name is Blund, then we joked and called it James Blund, a spoof off the 007 agent. Then my sister said James seemed too serious a name for it, hence Jamie Blund.

View far out from the window, One Utama, so near yet so far. And you can see Ikea and Ikano Power Centre right across the street, easily accessed by underpass or the sheltered pass over the road linking The Curve and the other side.

We were in KL just in time for the last day of the Ikea sales. =_= The shopping experience that can turn any kid, or even older people, mad out of impatience. Imagine frenzied packs of families looking for sales items, kids pushing along their kid size trolleys, or some being pushed while sitting in the giant trolleys. Cacophony of noises. Bright industrial style lights. Shopping layout designed to force people along one single track and thus entice them to spend more upon seeing the goods. I’m glad I got out in one piece, and before the closing time. I think that experience tired me out more than walking a day in KL’s largest shopping centre.

Next day, off we went to visit my university. Long ride it was, from Damansara to Semenyih it took about 1 hour and 15 minutes. First thought upon entering Semenyih town... “Hahhhh?! Am I really just one hour from KL? Is that forest I see? Oh gosh. The uni is so far from anywhere”

Yup, I was shocked, no doubt. But things were a little better when we arrived at the campus. “Okay.. it doesn’t seem too bad,”I thought.

My future home away from home.

See how they name the hostels, Langkawi Hall, Redang Hall, Tioman Hall, Pangkor Hall. All named after holiday islands, is that supposed to be mood uplifting? Heh.

My faculty labs are in the building on the left, or so the sign says.

The main building. The gigantic clock chimes SOOO loudly every hour.

On the way back, we went to the Subang Jaya area, where there are so many colleges. Drove into Monash Uni, seems like a metropolitan city campus, the people there look rich, for lack of a better description. A short stop at Sunway Pyramid where we had the oh-so-nice Secret Recipe cakes that I mentioned at the UGS blog, and then watched people ice-skating, just watched. On the way back to the hotel, stopped by One Utama, where my parents spent like forever at the Marks & Spencers shop. A place we always walk away from with at least the divine cookies. Fattening but oh so good.

Third day at KL had got to be the most time-wasting yet carefree day. Went to KLCC, of all places. Mainly so my brother could visit the Petrosains place. Well, it was the second time for me and my sis and we were a bit unfazed by it. But there was nevertheless fun to be had.

I love infinity mirrors...

After stops at the Kinokuniya bookstore, and after that the time where my sister and I wandered off to find the Japanese books section on another floor. After which our further wandering led us to the exhibition mentioned in the previous post. Wandering is good...

Upon evening, had a walk around the KLCC park. Where, my sister I think, took this lovely photo.

Somehow, it just seems like this could be a scene from any big city in the world. My dad said that the two buildings on the left are designed by Norman Foster, if I did not hear wrongly. Supposedly very high-end residence.

And this photo is by me, taken at 6.58pm, as I can tell from that huge digital clock.

Fourth day was enjoyable, almost half a day spent at Low Yat. Found my new love, he goes by the name Toshiba. My little power machine, except lacking on the memory space part, like me. Hehe. And I got myself another new companion. Goodbye my two years old Nokia 3120, hello to my SE w610i. First time I have bought a phone in my whole life, since my old phone was a free gift. Gee.

I think my brother quite liked the 4th day too, for a different reason. We got to take public transport! My brother just loves trains. We took the RapidKL from Kelana Jaya all the way to Sentral, then the monorail to Bukit Bintang area. And roughly the same way back, after which we took a taxi to One Utama for more shopping. Yay. Still couldn’t finish exploring the place.

Last day at KL, it rained... With the little time we had, we could only do a bit of last minute shopping at The Curve. Oh yea, I did not mention that the days before, we managed to sample the Big Apple Doughnuts, or whatever they are called, nothing particularly special. I can kick myself for not going to Krispy Kreme at Bali when I saw it, slipped my mind that that’s the famous one. Haiya. And at The Curve also got to have the Xiao Loong Pao at Dragon-I restaurant. Finally get to taste what it’s like after reading so much about it in blogs.

Quick snapshot of The Curve before hurriedly leaving to pack and check out at the hotel.

Still raining as we left the hotel. Still raining when we arrived at LCCT some time later. Still raining when we had lunch at the terminal at McD. Rain rain rain. The rain which got our flight delayed almost an hour.

This ice-cream is so unlike the McD ice-cream in Kuching. I just had to have it, after remembering how good and creamy it tasted the last time I had it upon returning from Bali.

And so ended the KL trip. Much better trip than last time I’d say, we certainly have learnt from past experience. Heh. So, another week or so before I go to KL, this time alone. Jittery...

Saturday, June 30, 2007

It seems to have been ages since I’ve blogged here, these days have been tired to blog and my only posts are at the UGS blog.

Anyway, two weekends ago (yes, two!), Jasmine came back from Malacca for a study break and we met up with her. Oooh, really become mei nu already, even Tze Siew’s mother was teasing when at her house, who’s that mei nu, presumably referring to Jasmine.

For a large part of that Saturday afternoon, the focus of attention was however towards Jia Lin’s new puppy, Jolie. Named after the actress Angelina Jolie. That little puppy sure is very hyperactive and playful, running around the living room of Tze Siew’s house and trying to “play” with us. Aiks, to be honest, I’m quite scared of dogs. Haha.

Even eating was a bit of a challenge, having to put our food away from Jolie less she jumped up and tried to get it. Hehe.

Two “monkeys” caught in the act

Anyway, we talked while we could, but when Jolie started misbehaving and making a “mess”, it was time for her to be tied up and later sent home.

Thus, after that, our outing really started. First up, we went to Song Kheng Hai for some shaved ice desserts. All of us had the “cham cham”, except Siaw Fern who had Special. Here’s a photo of what I had, it looks kinda icky but don’t judge a dessert by how it looks, this really is the cheapest, nicest, icy treat you can get.

The "cham cham"

Jia Lin & Jasmine

Next, we went to Hock Lee Centre’s arcade. A place that I’ve never been to before despite passing by it many a time. So there we were, 5 of us noobs, trying out our hand at the racing game and me losing badly, very badly. Only played that once. Then, Jia Lin pulled me along to play some kind of sniper game. That was exhilarating. Thank goodness I only spent RM2 in total, actually those games aren’t really that worth it considering you can get almost the same feel playing it on game consoles.

After we got out from Hock Lee, it was raining very heavily and there was a traffic jam around Padungan area since Hotlink was having an outdoor concert somewhere there. So we were stretching the limits of our brains thinking of somewhere to go for dinner and ended up at Pinoy Ihaw-ihaw instead, the Phillipino place at Padungan Road. My verdict is: now I remember why I had doubts coming back here, and I don’t think I’m giving them another second chance.

The menu

Tze Siew gawking after looking at the menu prices? Hehe. Jasmine dreaming in the background.. Or watching tv?

Take a look at this dish, and guess what it is and what price…

Can you believe this one dish cost RM12? This is what it is called..

I kid you not, RM12 for this which is not even pure crab meat, it’s like spring roll filling inside, they mixed it with pork I think. Though it did taste good, the price is not really justifiable in my opinion.

Here’s what else we had. That’s BBQ Pork and Phillipino style fish head soup in the photo. It’s RM2 per stick and RM12 per bowl respectively. The rice costs RM1 per plate.

And this is the Ginisang Sitaw, fancy name for long beans fried with prawn, which cost RM8. Again, the price.. Gee.

And since three of us there were such big eaters, we had to order another dish, spaghetti. This one really is not halal, I don’t think I’ve ever eaten spaghetti quite like this..

Well, after the dinner, the waiter came with two pieces of paper, one the bill and one a message for somebody. Ahem ahem. Guess who, and guess what it was about. Haha. Then, it was time to leave and since it was getting a bit late and Jasmine had a flight to catch the next morning, we sent her home and bid farewell.

Well, it was good getting together with friends, lots of fun and I will miss them since they have now all gone for uni, except me. At least Siaw Fern and Jia Lin will be in Kuching.. Sigh. Again I’m the one behind.

I still have lots to blog about, including a tag by Valarie. Eek, will blog about it as soon as I can.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Saturday treats

Went out with Rose again some time ago, this time for a bit of shopping and lunch at Madam Tang’s.

Firstly, we met up at Sarawak Plaza, where the Lea Clearance Sales was going on, and it was insane. The shop was full of stuff, but nothing that caught my eye could fit me. It was either too small, or too big. Those people who have size 5 feet would have plenty more options though. But what is it with shoe shops always putting out the standard display shoe size as a 5? The last time I was a size 5 was in primary school I think, or in lower secondary. Haha.

Ah, another thing is this friend of mine often says she’s fat when she tries on or browses goods when shopping when she’s not. Don’t get too fanatical about dieting, you’re beautiful as you are, Rose.

Anyway, then later while walking around, Rose decided to get some chocolate for my little brother. I told her there wasn’t any need to, but she really insisted on doing so. Thanks so much yea, Rose, so kind and generous of you. My brother really liked the tube of Smarties-like chocolate, he ate a little bit a time and only finished it three days later I think.

Time was a bit tight that day, so we headed off to lunch at Madam Tang’s to have their really good Beef Noodles. After hearing all the raves about it, I finally find how why it’s garnerd such good reviews.

Would you just look at that bowl of noodles, I’m getting hungry looking at it. And it was perfect to have it during that rainy day.

And here’s the name card of the place, funny thing about the place is that it only serves three kinds of dishes, Nasi Lemak, Sarawak Laksa and Beef Noodles. The Beef Noodles I had was the normal variant and cost RM4.50. There’s a special kind that cost more. Same goes for the other two dishes, there is the normal and special variant. And from what I’ve heard, they are all really good.

And the back of the card shows directions to the place, and it’s opening hours. It opens for breakfast at 8 and is open till 3pm.

Well, thanks again to Rose for accompanying me for that day. So going to miss outings with my old friends when I go over to university. Sigh.. countdown.. 4 months.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Hair Cut/Pan's Labryinth/Tze Siew's bday/Causeway Bay Hong Kong Restaurant

On last Sunday, got a hair cut, it was an unplanned thing. Actually, I have not had a hair cut since December. Developed a bit of a hair-cutting phobia you see. Somehow my hair always ends up looking its worse right after a hair cut. Not right after I had walked out of the hair salon mind you, that’s when it looks its best. After all that hair cutting, thermal-killing of my hair, blowdrying till my hair is poker straight, it looks pretty good. But after I washed my hair this time after the hair cut, whew, I couldn’t believe the mess I was left with. Perhaps they layered my hair too much.

Anyway, a photo of how I looked right after the hair cut.

Then, that afternoon, I met up with some friends to watch Pan’s Labryinth and have dinner. It was also a kind of late celebration for Tze Siew’s birthday. First time I have watched a film with no idea what it was about. I thought.. Pan’s Labryinth.. “Labryinth”.. Like a kiddy, hide-and-seek kind of movie? Or something like Narnia? How wrong I was.

Don’t be fooled by the inclusion of fairies and mystical creatures in this movie. I wouldn’t recommend any kid to watch this. The gory, the violence, the horror… My goodness. The movie is set in the post world war one Spain, but in an area of Spain, Italian fascists were trying to maintain control. The captain of the soldiers is the main character’s step-father, Ophelia. She and her heavily pregnant mother are forced to move from the city to the countryside, where the Captain is stationed, so that Ophelia’s mother can give birth with the father by the side.

And from there, the story unfolds.. Ophelia discovers there is more than it seems in the forest, that a portal to a magical realm exists within a labryinth. And guided by a fairy, she ventures deep into the labryinth, where with the help of a fawn, she discovers who she really is and her destiny.

Ophelia has to complete three challenges. I’d say the scariest one is when she has to enter the lair of a monster that eats children. Before entering, she is strongly warned against eating any food there. And when she enters, she sees that the creature sits dormantly in front of a feast, grotesquely misfigured, pale as the moon is his skin, yet the tips of his fingers, toes and folds of his skin are bloody red. Add to that there is nothing on his face except two slits for nostrils and a mouth. It really is a scary sight.

After retrieving a key, Ophelia predictably goes against the rules and picks up a grape to eat. This stirs the monster and he picks up the two eyeballs on a plate in front of him, puts it into his palms, holds up the palms to his face and looks around. Aaaah!!!

Then he starts stumbling towards Ophelia, like an old man arisen from deep slumber. As for what happens next, you just have to watch it to find out. I’m not very good at describing scenes you see.

Anyway, after exiting the chilly movie theatre, we were feeling spooked out, and a bit grossed out by the gory scenes which I will not write out here.. After a long time of deciding where to go for dinner, we settled for Crowne Square. Where we tried out a new place called Causeway Bay Hong Kong Restaurant. Ordered 4 kinds of food to share..

Here’s the Cheese Baked Rice with Chicken Chop, costs RM9.90. Very rich, very cheesy, and if you were to finish the whole thing by yourself I think it will be overkill.

And here’s the Yang Chow Fried Rice, RM7.90. Nothing really special.

The Steamed Venison Rice with Black Pepper Sauce, RM7.90. Interesting bowl it comes in. The top is only a layer of venison while the rest beneath it is a lot of rice.

And what I think was the best, Sizzling Noodles with Sliced Beef. The noodles are really full of flavour, the beef tender. But I think all the food there really has a lot of flavouring.

Hmm.. the place overall isn’t that bad. Although I remembered it being more crowded during the Sunday afternoon that I went last time. And note that the dim sum is only served till 4pm daily. When we went, it was too late to sample the dim sum.

Finally, here’s a photo of the birthday girl, Tze Siew..

And a photo of the two other beauties who went out with us, Jia Lin and Siaw Fern.

Oh yea, after Siaw Fern went back, the three of us girls even went to China Friendship Park and tried to take photos. I think the better photos would be on Jia Lin’s T50. Surprisingly, there were quite a lot of other people there too, taking photos, pak toh-ing. Heh.

Exploring Kuching from a new point of view

So here I am, writing up a post I should have written some time ago. So, now this is going to be a really long entry, I think I will break this up into two posts for easier reading…

First up, two weeks ago on Saturday, Roselyn and I decided to do something different from a change. Instead of jalan-jalan cari makan (walk around in search of food), or the usual window shopping, we decided to explore Kuching as a tourist would do. Believe it or not, it was actually quite fun! And we sure walked a lot.

We started off parking the car at Carpenter Street at about 11am, the moment we got down from the car, it started drizzling. Oh well, it did not dampen our spirits, we carried on walking down Carpenter Street until we reached the Textile Museum, which my friend had never visited so we went there. It was eerily devoid of people upstairs, as the staff were mainly downstairs. And the mannequins that were depicting scenes of making textiles were quite spooky in that quiet and secluded place. Hehe. Then we were walking when Roselyn said something about ghosts when one of the doors suddenly opened. Really scared us, turns out it was just a staff who was using the toilets upstairs.

Anyway, next destination after that was the nearby India Street. It was still drizzling when we walked over. But no matter since along the street, we could walk along the sheltered five-foot way. Along the street, there were many shops, many selling clothes and cheap they were. All the way, I was holding tightly onto my bag, for fear of snatch thiefs or pickpockets, I was carrying my beloved camera afterall. Needless to say, I didn’t even dare to take out my camera there to snap photos. Perhaps next time, when I come with my bodyguards. Haha.

The rain did not seem to stop, in fact it got heavier as lunch time approached, and we just kept continuing to walk. Walked and walked, till we reached Main Bazaar. Where there are more shops, many of them tourist souvenirs shops this time. Sure did have a blast discovering the many shops along the way. Eventually, we realised that many of the shops carried similar items. Nevertheless, there were some interesting items. And the handicraft bags were really beautiful and not that expensive. In fact, when I went to Malacca at West Malaysia, one of the shopkeepers said that the bags they sold in the souvenir shop there is actually from Kuching.

When we had finished walking the entire length of Main Bazaar, it was already about 3pm and we had not even eaten lunch. So, a short drive away and we were at McD. The rain eventually stopped after we finished lunch. The sun was out again, and we decided to walk along the Waterfront from McD. We walked along the whole length, took photos too. Like this photo…

Taken in front of the James Brooke Restaurant where there is this interesting cat art piece.

Then, we walked further along and realised that the Fish and Pets Expo was on around the area at the Square Tower. I have blogged about it at the Undergroundsquare Blog if you want to read more. One thing I remembered clearly, the cats exhibition causing my respiratory system to be polluted by cat hair.

After a quick round around the expo, we crossed the road to the Old Courthouse. Where the Tourist Information Centre now is. More photo taking session ensued. Here’s a photo of me… Yea, bad hair day, the rest of my photos looked worse.

After all that, we finally walked back to where we had parked our car near McD. Somehow, the walk back seemed longer than when we had made our way here. Heh. I’m not sure how many kilometres I walked that day. But it sure was a fun experience. Nevermind the aches my legs were in after that.

The view from the Waterfront..

Mosaic patterned floor at the Waterfront. Nice, right?

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Blogging with mind on energy saver mode

This is what I half wish I could be doing. Sleep after a long day at work is such a welcome, however the lure of the Internet is too great.

Yesterday after work, I played badminton with my brother in the backyard. Then my dad joined and after I smashed the shuttlecock haphazardly (I’m terrible at badminton) into the direction of a climbing plant and my dad hit it anyway, the flowers from the plant dropped and twirled as they descended. Attracted my attention as the flowers, some purple and some wilted as they were brown, twirled towards the grass. I had half the urge to go over and shake the leaves so that more confetti would ensue. Hehe. Overcome by a sudden childishness, I stared in amazement at its beauty for a while till the game resumed.

I had hopes of turning on my pc and writing up a long post about something I did two Saturdays ago. Unfortunately, my mind is worn out and all I can muster my strength to blog about is a post like this. This will have to do, for the mean time.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Got Photoshop at last, again

It has been ages since I've used Photoshop since I've only got it on my own computer. So two days ago, after I finally laid my hands on one, through.. certain sources, I was keen to get back to messing about with it. Needless to say, my Photoshop have gone rusty, not that there were that good to begin with, I have much to learn.

Well, anyway here's a sig that I just made. It's not much, but I'm just putting it up for the sake of putting something up.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Damai trip

Last weekend, the girls and I decided to go to Damai beach for a short getaway. And it was fun, thanks to you girls, Jia Lin, Sarah, Tze Siew and Siaw Fern. Thanks especially to Jia Lin, who went through all the trouble of getting the Rexton and driving us all the way to and back.

Since the Damai Lagoon Resort was under renovation, we had to stay at the Damai Beach Resort, which I have not stayed at for more than 10 years? It’s smaller than Damai Lagoon and the facilities aren’t as aestheticall pleasing, however the rooms are admittedly larger. Which is a huge plus, when 5 people are sharing one room. There were two queen sized beds for the Superior Room. A good thing, or else I wouldn’t know how anybody can sleep that night.

After checking in on Saturday afternoon, we settled down in the room, and moments later the tv was switched on which, to the girls’ delight, had 8TV, a tv channel not normally shown in East Malaysia unless you have satellite tv. The weather was a bit cloudy and we were worried that it would be a rainy weekend, which would be a bummer. Fortunately, it did not rain at all till we got back to Kuching, what luck. So after a bit of tv watching whilst Sarah had already set up her laptop and was watching movies, we decided it was time to venture outdoors. To the beach it was!

As you can see from the photo, the weather was quite cool, quite nice weather but the waves were quite big. You can see the chalets of Damai Lagoon Resort in the distance.

This is Siaw Fern and Jia Lin, not camera shy at all.

And a smiling Tze Siew.

Whose foot is whose? Haha. No prizes for guessing whose foot is mine.

I’m going to make this into my web banner or forum sig. Haha. Thanks to Sarah for coming up with the idea of writing our names in the sand.

That’s Sarah with one of her two cameras. Yes, she brought two cameras, a 6.1mpx Pentax one and a Nikon one which she lent to Jia Lin to use.

Gah, I look weird in this photo, but must at least put up one photo of me at the beach or else I would get complaints. Like what happened for my Bali trip post. Haha.

My four friends who were my trip buddies. From left to right: Tze Siew, Siaw Fern, Jia Lin and Sarah.

At night, we went to Palm Beach Restaurant for dinner but got a bit lost on the way. We thought we had drove too far down the road, turned back to retrace our route only to discover that we should have drove a bit further down the road and we would have reached our destination. And when we got there, there seemed to be quite a crowd and there was some serious karaoke singing going on, quite an earsore. But we were good sports I think. Haha. Managed to withstand the singing all throughout dinner. Ordering was quite tedious since we had a budget to meet and yet wanted to try out the specialties like the seafood. In the end, managed to order crab and a few other ordinary dishes.

Later when we got back to the resort, walked to the beachfront where there were reclining chairs on the grass and just lazed around while enjoying the cool sea breeze. Then, Jia Lin and I excused ourselves under the guise of having to go back to the room to use the bathroom. The real plan was to prepare while we got ready the birthday cake to surprise Tze Siew, who’s birthday is in two weeks time.

When we were ready, called up the girls who led Tze Siew back who seemed surprised, although I’m not sure how surprised.

Tze Siew cutting the cake while smiling away, such a smiley girl. Hehe.

I think I ate the most of the Oreo Cheese cake, had three helpings. When I mentioned it, the girls looked at me in disbelief. Yea, I have a soft spot for sweet treats.

Anyway, later on that night, after getting bored of watching tv, playing cards, we decided to play Truth or Dare. By dealing out cards and seeing who got the lowest value, I somehow ended up being the first victim. I chose Dare, which was to go to the room next door and knock on the door before running away. Quite easy. The next person who chose Dare had to go to the reception and say “I love you” to the person there, who happened to be female. Anyway, somehow ended up that I was the victim three times during the game, twice of which I was the dealer of the cards. I didn’t dare to choose Dare anymore, after having a faint suspicion that the girls were not going to let me off with such an easy dare again. Thankfully, the two Truth questions that I got were quite easy, first being “Who do I keep messaging everyday?” the next being “Do you like any of the guys that you message?” which I got out of letting out much details since that was a “Yes or No” question. Hah. Amateurs.

The next day, all too soon it was time to leave the place. Sure was fun, although there were times of idleness and things started to get a tad boring. Nevertheless, those were good times that I will cherish, afterall us girls may not get to do something like this for sometime, if ever at all. Since we are all going off to university and all that. Sigh, how time flies.

Oh yea, before going back, we went to visit the Damai Hilltop Resort which is set on higher land and has splendid views. Here are some photos taken there..

The sea view from the top. Very relaxing… Just looking at it makes me feel sleepy. Or perhaps it’s just me and my afternoon lapse in energy.

The pool at the hilltop resort, much nicer than the one at Damai Beach Resort. When I saw this frangipani plant, I knew it would make a good frame for the pool.

So, that’s all for my post about the Damai trip.

PS. I’ve been blogging three times a week at Undergroundsquare Blog due to a pact I made with the Boss. So for more posts written by me, just hop over, there are other contributors there too, so the writing style never gets dull.